A social media account linked to Islamic State uploads video purporting to show IS fighters in control of a power plant west of the Libyan city of Sirte.
SAID TO BE SIRTE, LIBYA (SAID TO BE JUNE 9, 2015) (SOCIAL MEDIA WEBSITE) – Islamic State militants are purportedly seen in control of a power plant west of the Libyan city of Sirte, according to video uploaded to a social media account linked to the group.
The group and a military source said on Tuesday (June 9) that the plant had been seized.
The video, said to have been shot on Tuesday and bearing the logo of A’maq news, shows armed fighters purportedly entering the power plant.
An armed fighter is shown taking down the Libyan national flag.
Islamic State released a message on social media saying that the plant had been taken, and that the capture of the plant meant militants had driven their enemies out of the entire city.
Forces loyal to the self-declared government that controls the capital Tripoli pulled out of the plant after Islamic State attacked it on Tuesday morning.
Three soldiers were killed in the attack, a military source said.
Islamic State has exploited the general turmoil and security vacuum in Libya, where two governments are vying for power four years after the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi, to build up a presence in several cities.
The militants earlier this year captured most of Sirte, Gaddafi’s home town, seizing the airport and driving a force loyal to the Tripoli government out to the city suburbs.
Since the start of the year militants in Libya loyal to Islamic State have claimed responsibility for killing dozens of Egyptian and Ethiopian Christians, as well attacks on Tripoli’s luxury Corinthia hotel, embassies and oilfields.
Libya’s internationally recognised government has been working out of the east of the country since losing control of Tripoli and western Libya in August.